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Blackballed in Del norte county

Discussion in 'Discrimination & Sexual Harassment' started by Tomson Alcindor, Jun 5, 2017.

  1. Tomson Alcindor

    Tomson Alcindor Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
    California
    Del Norte County recently received Federal funding through the state of California for storm related damages, to provide employment for under-employed or unemployed individuals that qualify.
    Being recently laid off from a seasonal position at a roadside attraction in Klamath, Ca., I qualified for the program.
    I applied for and interviewed for a position with a supervisor for the city managers of Crescent City (through the local workforce center) doing manual labor such as painting, clearing trails at state parks, operating a weed-eater...etc, any repair related needs that were done by storm damage.
    My interview was successful and I was told I had a very good chance of joining the team.

    One of my past jobs in Crescent City was with the local radio station, where I was employed for approximately 10 years. After witnessing some racist activity by some of the employee's at the station, I made management aware of the situation, to which the management simply took the side of the employees and I was fired as a result. ( the office employees treated Mexicans and Native Americans unfairly and with indifference)
    I, in turn, filed a complaint with the Dept. of fair employment and housing for being fired for "whistleblowing" about the issue.
    I believe I'm being blackballed by the radio station for my filing the complaint.
    The radio station of this small town and the general manager, who is, (was) also a popular DJ has a long reach into the affairs that take place in Crescent City and I think somehow she has blocked (or coerced a City manager to exclude) my opportunity to utilize the Federal funding provided by the State of California because her personal dislike for my for having shed light on an issue that she did not want to be publicized.
    It should also be pointed out that I have not yet gone through the background check process, suggesting the HR manager for the city, (who has excluded me from the job offer) has somehow been contacted by the radio station or someone that knows of my whistleblowing to the State.

    In summary, there was no information of my past employment in the uptake process with the Del Norte workforce center and it is for that reason I believe something far more nefarious is at hand.
     
  2. hrforme

    hrforme Active Member

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    how do you know that they didn't have an abundance of job applicants for the position(s) and that you didn't make the final cut for some other reason -- they really only need one other reason? It's going to be hard to prove you were blackballed if all positions got filled by others who also had the qualifications to do the jobs

    And how would the DJ/Radio Manager even know you applied? Did you put that former job down on an application? Did you sign a consent for them to do a BG check? Even though you stated you hadn't gone through the bg check process (whatever you think that is)....
     
    leslie82 likes this.
  3. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    If a person is hired to open the front door, empty trash cans, or answer telephones; being a caped crusader can be a poor career move.

    If that has happened to you, you better believe you'll never be able to prove it.

    Therefore, be smart, answer the phone, wash cars, serve lunch, sell cars, or only engage in the activities you were hired to perform.
     
    leslie82 likes this.
  4. Tomson Alcindor

    Tomson Alcindor Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Apparently, you read someone else's thread and inadvertently posted on my discussion, a forgivable mistake. However, if you are replying to my post, please take a minute to re-read it, as you will notice, there is absolutely no mention of opening doors, emptying trash cans or answering phones, also your "caped crusader" remark seems misplaced, as it is difficult to see injustice from atop your ivory tower.
    I was fired from my job, not because I didn't show up or was late or even disinterested in the work. I loved my job as a radio DJ. I went to school to learn recording engineering and was hired by the radio station for the skills I possessed. I was very good at my job, I was given regular raises as a result. I never missed a scheduled day of work and every day I showed up 45 minutes early, (unpaid by the way) to prepare for my daily show.
    I had noticed from early on, that one of the office girls treated some of the patrons unfairly as they came into the station for information, usually Native Americans and Mexicans, but also folks that she knew to be welfare recipients.
    I made the mistake of bringing light to the situation and as I said, I was fired for that reason and not because of any work related shortcomings.

    As I also mentioned, I filed a complaint with the State Dept for Fair employment and housing about being fired for "whistleblowing" about the racism I had witnessed, that further pissed off the manager. As Shakespear once famously quoted, "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned"
    And to be certain, if I could find work answering phones or washing cars or even serving lunch, I would do it.
     
  5. hrforme

    hrforme Active Member

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    what was the outcome of the complaint to the SDFEH? Did they find for you? Did you receive a right to sue letter? Did you sue? Did you settle? Did the settlement include a non-disclosure/confidentiality statement for either side? If not, you could try to file another retaliation claim, but that would be bringing the possible new employer into the situation and I can pretty much guarantee you, it still won't get you the job. Again, all they need is one OTHER reason as to why they didn't hire you and that is still as easy as "too many applicants" if there were truly a lot.

    No matter, it is still going to be very hard to prove any link. It could be as simple as they asked for a reference and the radio station said you were not rehirable (because they don't rehire anyone) and the program uses that as a Y/N on hiring. Or again, that they checked NO references but just had too many others who wanted the positions who were a better fit (because honestly if you are a recording engineer by trade, you are way overqualified to do manual work and are more likely to leave the job quickly).
     
    leslie82 likes this.
  6. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    Sometimes, correction most of the time, people fail to connect the dots.

    No worries, mate, life marches on.
     
  7. Tomson Alcindor

    Tomson Alcindor Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I first want to thank you for taking the time to respond. I can't answer some of the questions yet, I need to do some more digging myself.
    I'll try to answer some. First, I have an extensive background in construction and carpentry, also landscaping and irrigation and for that reason, I was put at the top of the list and was suggested for a supervisor position and I was the first to be interviewed.
    Second, it's a very small town and everybody knows everyone else's business.
    As far as the DFEH, it's a flawed system. I submitted my side of the story and the agent reviewing my case uptakes that information. She then sends a copy of my side of the story to the station and asks for their side of the story. They in-turn make up a completely different story and claim that their story is the truth, (because they are under no obligation to tell the truth and they also have a team of lawyers telling them what to say). It's absurd to think that they would willingly tell the truth when they have so much to lose. The DFEH should have never sent them my side of the story and simply conducted a deposition under oath with all persons involved. I'm sure that with the threat of perjury hanging over their heads, the truth would have come forward.
    I did receive a right to sue notice but chose not to because, at the time, I did not forsee any long term damage to my reputation and simply wanted them to be reprimanded by the state for allowing prejudice and racism in their workplace.

    Again, thanks for taking the time. I'm sure you're correct that only one action could exclude me from being hired, but on the other hand it would only take one person to admit that they were told to leave me out of the process and then there would be a ripple effect right up the chain of command until someone was forced to tell the truth.(I dream in color...lol)
     
  8. hrforme

    hrforme Active Member

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    Actually the DFEH is required to send them a full copy of your claim within something like 10 days after you file it (at least that is the federal EEOC deadline). The defending party has the right to know and defend against your claim during the investigation. They then are asked to provide a response. Then usually an investigation takes place unless at some point the complaining party stops it and asks for an immediate "right to sue' letter. Most investigations end in a "right to sue" letter anyway as the DFEH (and federally the EEOC) can't take up every possible case and usually only go after the big guys with very large issues. Unfortunately the system is what it is, but each side deserves due process and DFEH isn't going to do any investigation without first getting information from each side and sharing that with the other party so they can respond.

    you can "file your retaliation claim with the DFEH or the EEOC who will then determine if there is a causal connection between the protected activity (termination due to discrimination claim) and the adverse employment action (future negative reference)" (my words in parentheses) - How to Prove Retaliation in the Workplace Your issue is going to be proving that causal connection between the complaint/termination/original retaliation claim and the possible bad reference, if there was one-- because it's not a direct adverse action. If the radio station was able to lie its way out of the first charge, I suspect they will be able to do so on any second charge if they did give a bad reference that dealt with the claim/term/etc.

    Again in either action all they had to prove was that there was another reason to first terminate your employment and second either give a bad reference due to something other than your complaint OR it is possible they never gave a reference at all and the new potential employer didn't hire for some other reason. Maybe they found a number of people with the same level of qualifications if you were the first one interviewed and they didn't realize that they would when they spoke with you. Honestly unless you get the potential new employer to admit they got a bad reference from the radio station and used it in their decision, you are fighting a very uphill battle pushing a very heavy weight.
     
    Tomson Alcindor likes this.

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